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La Brea Series Finale Explained: Creator David Appelbaum Reveals Secrets

What happens to the Harris family in the series finale of La Brea?

By Tara Bennett

Spoilers for the series finale episode of La Brea!

If you were expecting all kinds of dino-related carnage and death in the series finale of La Brea, series creator David Appelbaum would like a word. Yes, the series killed off a few characters, but in general, La Brea was a pretty optimistic series about disparate families thrown into the most dire situation which few could even begin to imagine: falling into a massive sinkhole in Los Angeles and landing in 10,000 BC. 

How to Watch

Watch La Brea on NBC and Peacock.

RELATED: La Brea Creator Teases Dinosaurs, Twists and "Balancing Act" of Crafting the Final Season

Luckily, Appelbaum could imagine it all, and he and his team brought it to life across three seasons and 30 episodes of La Brea. He even scripted the last episode, "The Road Home, Part 2," which brought everyone's stories in the large ensemble to a satisfying close. With the season now wrapped, Appelbaum spoke to NBC Insider about wanting to give his characters positive endings, going out with a dino-tastic "game of chicken," and if there could be more stories told in this universe. 

La Brea Creator David Appelbaum Discusses the Series Finale

What happens to Ty and Scott in the La Brea series finale?

Scott and Ty stand outside in La Brea Episode 306.

Even though Season 3 consisted of just six episodes, Appelbaum said it was not an easy feat to bring the series to a close. "These episodes go through lots of iterations. Any episode does, and certainly for the finale it was one we wanted to do right," he explained. "So we did spend a lot of time in the writers' room trying to nail it down and figure out how do we bring all these pieces together, all the plot threads together. But also the character stories and give them all their proper emotional endings?"

For late-blooming heroes Ty (Chiké Okonkwo) and Scott (Rohan Mirchandaney), both got their ladies in the end. With Ty, that meant he was the only Los Angeles resident to stay in 10,000 BC. Appelbaum said they determined his fate in Season 2 after he married Paara (Tonantzin Carmelo). 

RELATED: Dr. Ty Coleman and Paara's Relationship Explained on La Brea

"Ty begins the show nearly contemplating suicide and having no hope at all," the showrunner reminded us. "But through the course of Season 1 and into Season 2, his cancer is cured and he finds out what's important to him. And that's this woman. So it didn't seem like there was anywhere else that he would want to be. We wanted to give him a happy ending because I think it is ultimately an optimistic show. The happy ending that seemed appropriate for Ty was finally being reunited with Paara in this place where he's found himself."

With Scott, we get him going full romantic swoon when he returns to 2021 and tracks down the woman who got away. "We wanted to show the growth of the character over three seasons," Appelbaum said. "He starts in a very different place. He's governed by his fear and his anxiety with a dependence on marijuana. He's not a hero. He couldn't even conceive of that. But he goes through so many different trials over the course of these seasons and becomes a much different person. We wanted to encapsulate that with this moment with a woman who got away from him when he was the man that he was before."

T-Rex versus Gavin's bomber

A jet approaches a creature in La Brea Episode 306.

In arguably the craziest sequence of the whole series, the much anticipated showdown with a Tyrannosaurus rex actually features the dino barreling towards an accelerating Stealth Bomber piloted by Gavin Harris (Eoin Macken). Who came up with that?!

"For the finale, we wanted to go as big as we could, both in terms of the emotion but also in terms of spectacle," Appelbaum said of their overall decisions regarding the final dinosaur to be featured in the series. "I think no one on our writing staff had ever seen a chicken match between one and an airplane. It was fun. ... Also, we wanted to save the T-Rex we had for the final episode because Spielberg and Jurassic Park are huge inspirations for me and for the show. It seemed very fitting that we want to bring the most iconic dinosaur in for the end of the series."

Did Eve finally get reunited with her family in the La Brea series finale?

Gavin, Izzy, Eve, and Josh have a discussion outside in La Brea Episode 306.

Of course, Eve Harris (Natalie Zea) finally got out of her 1965 portal jail and reunited with her family in Los Angeles, 2021. Appelbaum said that was always the ending he saw in his head. 

"There are some things that we were very clear on, one of them being the very last scene with the the Harris family reuniting at the Wisdom Tree," he said. "I always knew that I wanted to bring the Harris family back together in the final scene of the series. It was a guiding light for us. It's a show about a family trying to get back to each other."

However, because Zea was not available to shoot Season 3 in Australia, Appelbaum shared a secret about that heartfelt reunion scene for the Harris clan. "We shot that scene with the Harris family before we shot anything in Season 3," he revealed. "That was the very first thing that we shot. Then we backfilled everything into that. After that, Eoin, Zyra and Jack traveled to Australia to shoot the rest of the season. We only worked with her that one day which was a very surreal way to do it."

RELATED: La Brea's Creator and Stars Talk Dino-Sized Season Premiere Spoilers, Mysteries and Endgame

Even with the series wrapping up, Appelbaum's still got more in the tank. "I think this is the end of the road for some of the characters, but if I had the opportunity, I have ideas to take some of the characters from this show, and also open it up to a new cast of characters and bring them all to 10,000 BC for a new adventure," he said.

"I've been inspired by shows like The White Lotus, where you take a little bit of what you had, but then bring in new characters," he continued. "I think the elements that define La Brea are the action adventure, the animals, the epic quality, but also a family story. I would have a different kind of family be the emotional heart of the series. So yeah, I would love to continue the story in a different way. But I do also feel like we've wrapped up this story in an emotionally satisfying way for the audience who've been there with us from the beginning."

Watch all three seasons of La Brea on Peacock now!